Professional Development Courses: Schedule

All three credit courses require 42 hours of instructional work throughout the duration of the course. Whether it is in-person class time or online alternative instruction, it is your opportunity to put your new knowledge into immediate practice. The frequency of online discussion/interaction with instructor and classmates is throughout the course. It is available 24 hours a day. For course descriptions simply click on the course name or visit our course catalog. 10 days prior to the course you will receive a Welcome email with directions and any other instructions for the course. If you have any questions about our scheduling please feel free to contact us at info@thomstecher.com.

Registration for courses closes 5 days before the first day of class or if the course is filled.

An official Grade Receipt Letter will be mailed by Neumann University at the conclusion of the course. Official transcripts can be ordered by visiting Transcripts and Forms page found here.

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Fall 2018

EDU 526 - Effective Classroom Management Strategies and Skills (online)

  • Price: $800.00
  • Dates: September 3 – October 28, 2018
  • Professors: Larry Newman
  • Location: Online. The course will be available 24 hours a day.

This course has been developed for the classroom teacher. It combines theory and practical application. Participants will be challenged to share their gifts and talents with the class and also examine areas they feel they need to improve. Teaching the children of today in the classrooms of today within the culture of today demands a retooling of the concept of teacher. Teaching factual information is easy. The true question is – are the students’ actively learning what is being taught? In order to bridge the gap between teaching and learning it is critical teachers possess effective classroom management strategies and techniques. “Essential Strategies…..” explores every aspect of managing a classroom from kindergarten through grade twelve. We start with the basics and using a variety of teaching and learning strategies we allow participants to develop the necessary skills to be a more effective teacher.

EDU 526 - Essential Wellness: Compassion, Connection and Courage

  • Price: $800.00
  • Dates: September 3 – October 28, 2018. In person meeting dates- 9/8, 9/22, 10/6, 10/20
  • Professors: Thom Stecher and Jessie McFarland
  • Location: Downingtown, PA

This course is for teachers, nurses, and all staff who want a deeper level of experience in self-reflection, self-awareness, courageous conversations, the willingness to explore vulnerability as the core of meaningful human experience and spirituality as the essence of wellness. Participants will be introduced to the essential need for play, authenticity, resilience, compassion, relationship, gratitude, trust and faith, creativity and calmness. We will experience how having meaningful work increases our longevity. Each class there will be time devoted to yoga, nutrition, exercise, meditation, and play.

EDU 526 - Diversity Awareness in Education (online)

  • Price: $800.00
  • Dates: September 17 – November 11, 2018
  • Professors: Alex Fizz
  • Location: Online. The course will be available 24 hours a day.

This course helps educators gain a greater awareness of the racial, ethnic, sexual orientation, gender, cultural, and all of the different forms of diversity present in their school, community, and beyond. Leaners will be involved in insightful and meaningful learning that will place a great emphasis on personal perspective and the perspectives of others.  This course will empower learners with the knowledge to create effective strategies for use in their curriculum, classroom, building, school, or community.

EDU 526 - Mindfulness in the Classroom

  • Price: $800.00
  • Dates: October 1 – November 25, 2018. In class meeting dates- 10/6, 10/20, 11/3, 11/17
  • Professors: Brian Aikens
  • Location: Glen Mills, PA

Mindfulness is defined by Jon Kabat­Zinn as “...awareness that arises through paying attention, on purpose, in a present moment, non­judgmentally.” Mindfulness is a form of attention and awareness training that helps people relate more effectively to their experiences. It involves paying attention to thoughts, feelings, and body sensations in a way that increases awareness, acceptance, and self­compassion to help manage difficult experiences, and create space to make healthy choices. This course will take you through personal mindfulness meditation practices to enhance your awareness of emotions, behaviors, and thoughts. Students will practice formal and informal meditation practices and learn how to incorporate them into their life. Practices will include sitting and walking meditation, loving­kindness meditation, body awareness, methods for integrating awareness into ordinary activities, and explore emerging research on the beneficial effects of mindfulness for mental health.

The second half of the class will explore how to integrate mindful awareness practices into the classroom environment. We will examine how mindfulness affects the brain in students, core mindfulness skills, mindful movement activities, and guided relaxation practices. We will explore current mindfulness programs in education and practice implementing activities during our class time together. Topics covered will support students to build empathy, awareness, compassion, attention skills, impulse control, and emotional regulation.

This experiential course is designed for beginners, which means that no prior experience with meditation is necessary, but the course is also suitable for those with meditation experience who want to refine their skills and implementation practices in the classroom. 

EDU 526 - Safe Schools: Conflict Management, Anger Control, and Violence Prevention (Online)

  • Price: $800.00
  • Dates: October 1 – November 25, 2018
  • Professors: Scott Heydt
  • Location: Online. The course will be available 24 hours a day.

This course is designed to provide concrete, immediate, experiential, prevention/intervention skills to deal with the issues of conflict, anger, and violence. Conflict is constant in the lives of ever-changing human beings, but conflict, left unchecked, becomes unhealthy. Anger and subsequent violence have brought fear into our schools, classrooms, and our children’s daily experience. No one is perfect. It is unrealistic to think we can avoid conflict and anger completely. Furthermore, it is unrealistic to think these emotions cannot be harnessed in a safe, healthy manner. In this course, we will cognitively and experientially understand the “seeds” of violence and develop healthy individual and school system responses. 

EDU 526 - Foundations of Teaching Stress Management (Online)

  • Price: $800.00
  • Dates: October 15– December 9, 2018
  • Professors: Philip Hochman
  • Location: Online. The course will be available 24 hours a day.

This course focuses on 4 key concepts that are directly relevant and applicable to the daily stress levels you experience and observe in the classroom, in the school building and on a playing field.  To make connections to our very own students/athletes is paramount, crucial to the course as we delve into practical methods to apply and address stress intermittently and sometimes immediately. By increasing our knowledge of core information about stress and the daily intricacies in which it is embedded, we will have increased vision and be able to “see” where and when we can apply this knowledge to our students and their behaviors. As a result we can decrease stress in their lives, which means less stress for us. Through reading, sharing, research, collaboration and connecting we will connect course work to classroom application. We will build confidence in ourselves and our ability to see, apply and adapt to many student behaviors and classroom situations.  This course is meant to increase awareness, realize potential and help connect us with our students.  We will better listen to our students’ needs, learn from one another and communicate more effectively as we learn in a fun, safe, environment that promotes less stress.  By approaching the class with an open-mind and a willingness to “experiment” and partake in multiple engaging activities, one will be able to transfer these concepts and activities into one’s classroom. Ultimately, one will lower the stress levels of students and the environment as one experience more success and happiness in one’s career.

EDU 526 - Making Schools Safe for The Invisible Minority (LGBT Youth)

  • Price: $800.00
  • Dates: October 22 – December 16, 2018. In class meeting dates- 10/27, 11/10, 11/17, 12/8
  • Professors: Alex Fizz
  • Location: Downingtown, PA

As educators, we are honored and obligated to meet the needs of all students. Research shows students who are gay, lesbian or perceived to be gay or lesbian experience a greater risk of suicide, substance abuse, dropping out of school and are often targets of violence and bullying. This course is designed to help teachers understand the backgrounds and needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered students and staff. We will also develop strategies that insure a safe and productive environment for all students.

EDU 526 - An Educator's Guide to Support Parents/Guardians Dealing with At-Risk Youth Behaviors (Online)

  • Price: $800.00
  • Dates: October 22 – December 16, 2018
  • Professors: Larry Newman
  • Location: Online. The course will be available 24 hours a day.

One of the most important tasks teachers face is working to establish a positive, constructive relationship with the parents/guardians of their students. When there are no outside issues parent contacts and face to face meetings are straightforward.  What if the student, their child, is involved in any at-risk behaviors? What skill set is essential for the teacher to possess in order to aid the parent/guardian in helping their child be successful in school? This course addresses those key issues.  Specific strategies will be presented, discussed, practiced, and implemented allowing participants to gain those critical skills.